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Friday, December 23, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections- December 23, 2011

GIVING JESUS

Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown His great mercy to her, and they rejoiced with her. – Luke 1:58

Just before I wrote this reflection, I called my family back in Manila. They were busy buying gifts to give this Christmas.
Maybe by the time you read this, you may have completed your shopping. Maybe you are now busy wrapping or even ready to give away the gifts.
Giving and receiving gifts makes Christmas fun but we sometimes forget the real reason for the celebration. As I read the Gospel today, the Spirit spoke to my heart . “Why don’t you give Jesus this Christmas? Share Him, speak of Him.”
As you give that beautifully wrapped gift, share your experiences too with the Lord. Tell them how the Lord healed you or how He protected you. Tell them how the Lord provided for your needs. Tell them how the Lord transformed you. I know that as they hear how the Lord has shown you His love, they will rejoice with you, in the same manner as the neighbors and relatives of Elizabeth did in today’s Gospel.
Who knows? Their Christmas may become more meaningful this year because of your sharing. Danny Tariman (danny@dtariman.com)
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REFLECTION:
Have you shared Jesus to your neighbors and relatives?

Lord, forgive me for being hesitant in sharing Your name and Your love. I pray that I may make a difference this Christmas by sharing You with others.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections- December 22, 2011

BERRY

“His mercy is from age to age to those who fear him.” – Luke 1: 50

An office mate emailed us a picture of four cute shitzu puppies for sale. My wife, Ambec, wanted to get one right away. But I was hesitant. I knew what it took to take care of a pet — time, effort and money. It was like having a baby.
I gave in under the condition that my wife and our helper would take care of it and it would cause no trouble to us. I can still remember claiming Berry from the van that delivered her. She was so tiny and helpless but she captured our hearts from day one.
Guess what? Almost everything that I was worried about came true. Were there any tangible benefits from having Berry? None. In my financial books, she came out as an expense. But we love her and she brings us joy. This is not logical.
I guess this is the best way I can explain God’s mercy and love for us. He loves me many, many more times compared to my love for Berry. Jesus died for me and took away all my sins. He continues to heal me and provide for me. When I felt like giving up on life, He raises me up. I can never repay Him. His mercy is illogical but this is His desire. Praise God! Ariel Driz (adriz77@yahoo.com)
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REFLECTION:
It’s three days before Christmas. Have you thanked the Lord lately for His mercy and love?

Lord Jesus, thank You for Your everlasting mercy and love. Amen.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections- December 21, 2011

THE DAILY CELEBRATION

“The Lord your God is in your midst, victorious warrior. He will exult over you with joy, He will be quiet in His love, He will rejoice over you with shouts of joy.” – Zephaniah 3:17

Do you know what doesn’t make any sense to me at all? It’s when parents tell their children, “Come and sit down, kids, let’s have a nice, quiet dinner.”
I’ve never had an actual quiet dinner with my family. The five of us are an incredibly noisy group of people, from my dad and mom all the way down to my two brothers. We tell jokes and deliver our punch lines with thundering emphasis complete with hand gestures and boisterous laughter. We hoot, whistle and applaud when we like the story that someone is saying about what happened to them that particular day. At times, we all have an opinion on a certain topic and we wind up yelling for our ideas to be heard over one another. Yes, we’re extremely loud. And I love it that way. Since I was a child, our family meals have been like an exciting party with good friends. That’s why I look forward to coming home.
Similarly, when God calls us to pray, He is inviting us to celebrate with Him. So let’s freely express our love and thanksgiving for the Lord without reservation. Let’s rejoice in His presence! Eleanore Lee (elyo.lee@gmail.com)
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REFLECTION:
What form of expression will you use to glorify the Lord today?

Lord, I will sing Your praises in the greatest of volumes for I am unashamed that others may hear of my love for You.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections- December 20, 2011

READY TO RECEIVE?

Mary said... “Let it be done to me as you say.” – Luke 1:38

For over 400 years, God made no contact with his people. All they knew about God were stories from the old prophets. There was nothing ever mentioned about a holy spirit. Suddenly, an awesome being appears before Mary telling her about preposterous things! If that happened to me, I would have probably fainted or maybe run away!
But not Mary. Her willing response could only mean that her spirit was prepared for such a thing. The Jews had been waiting for the promised Messiah as prophesied, but centuries had passed. Still, there were a handful who believed that God would fulfill His promise. They waited with anticipation and hope. Mary was one of them. Because she trusted God, she was ready to receive. Had she not been ready, she would have probably reacted as Ahaz did in the first reading when he was told to ask for an outrageous sign from God and he refused.
God is ready to fulfill all His promises in the Bible. He wants to bless us more than we can ever ask or imagine. The question is, are we prepared to receive everything that God wants to bless us with? Or, are we going to say that we do not deserve such a blessing and miss out on an opportunity of a lifetime? Ronna Ledesma (ronnaledesma@email.com)
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REFLECTION:
If God already sacrificed His only Son just to save us, why are we still struggling to believe that He can give us all things besides?

Lord, may my heart genuinely yearn for You, and not for what I can get from You.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections- December 19, 2011

special

An angel of the Lord appeared to the woman and said to her, “Though you are barren and have had no children, yet you will conceive and bear a son.” – Judges 13:3

Samson’s mother was a special woman. At a time when OB-GYNs were non-existent, God sent an angel to give pre-natal care to the woman who would bear a child consecrated to God from the womb.
Reading through the angel’s commands to her reminded me of my obstetrician’s instructions and what I read in pregnancy books when I was infanticipating.
Every woman who has carried a child in her womb will tell you what a special experience it is to have another human being growing inside you. But even more special is the knowledge that the child you carry will someday be used mightily by God for His purposes.
Our children don’t have to be prophets or conceived miraculously for them to be set apart for God. A godly upbringing and our own examples as good Christians will surely put them on the road to being servants of God. Rissa Singson-Kawpeng (justbreatherissa@gmail.com)

REFLECTION:
“Indeed, parents should act as role models to their children for they are a mirror through which their children depend for their vision.” (Gabriel Idoko)

Lord, do not let us be stumbling blocks to the little ones.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections - December 18, 2011

WHEN GOD SAYS NO

“Thus says the Lord: Should you build me a house to dwell in?” – 2 Samuel 7:5

After I resigned from an auditing firm, I applied in one company where the starting salary was high and the benefits were good. Weeks passed but I didn’t get a call from them. So, I decided to apply in a bank.
The salary offer didn’t impress me so I tried to negotiate. Although I didn’t get the starting salary I wanted, I accepted the offer and got a job as an audit supervisor. During my first year, I was promoted to officer level and received three salary increases. I was promoted several times more in my 10-year stay there. My friend who worked in the other company for several years told me that she still hadn’t received a salary increase nor a promotion.
David wanted to build a “house” for the Lord because the ark of God dwelt in a tent. But God said no. Although He turned down David’s request, He promised to continue the “house” of David forever, which He fulfilled through the coming of Jesus Christ.
God said no to my desire to work in the other company because He had something better in store for me.
When God says no to our plans, let us trust that He knows what’s best for us. Judith Concepcion (svp_jmc@yahoo.com)
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REFLECTION:
When God says no, do we use the other opportunities He gives us or do we insist on having it our way?

Lord, grant me the grace to be sensitive to Your leading, and then to follow You.

Daily Bible Reflections - December 17, 2011

THE IMPORTANCE OF LISTENING

“Assemble and listen, sons of Jacob, listen to Israel, your father.” – Genesis 49:2

In my experience, I’ve observed that students who get low grades in my classes are those who do not listen to my lectures and instructions. They are the ones who do other things like text on their cell phones or gossip with seat mates during discussion. And when things go wrong or if they fail in their grades, they complain without seeing their faults.
It is like also our approach to God’s Word. Sometimes, we do not truthfully listen to the teachings given by our priests, catechists and lay ministers. We’re sleepy during homilies at Mass or even resist the teachings of certain preachers because of our “religious pride,” claiming that we know already everything written in the Bible. Because of this, we do not understand the connection of Scriptures to the things happening around us. When trials or tragedies occur in our lives, we become angry with our Lord and put the blame on Him without seeing our faults.
Listening to God requires us to cast out all distractions and passionately focus on the message He’s teaching us. It also needs humility as we submit ourselves to accept what God is saying to us both in our heart and mind.Dho Rimando (dougsterrimando@yahoo.com.ph)
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REFLECTION:
Listening is not only hearing. Do you truthfully listen to God’s Word?

Lord, teach us to listen to You as You listen to our prayers.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections- December 16, 2011

ANSWERED!

The Lord says to his people, “Do what is just and right, for soon I will save you.” – Isaiah 56:1

Ronald was first introduced to the Kerygma Family when he got an email from a friend in June 2006. Two years after, he was able to attend the Feast in Pasig where he got his own Novena to God’s Love booklet. He wrote his seven dreams in the booklet and would regularly pray that they be granted.
Since he was living in Laguna, it was a challenge to go to Pasig every week. But he persevered and tried to attend every week.
Five months after attending his first Feast, he was offered a job by a multinational company. This job allowed him to use his talents and skills to help out his co-employees. Because of his exemplary performance he was promoted to the position after a couple of months. The promotion also came with his desired compensation and benefits. His job also gave him the opportunity to be more active in the Feast and also invite some officemates to attend the Kerygma Conference.
He realized that in less than two years God had granted him most of the dreams he had listed down!
Let us always put our complete trust that the Lord will save us. Alvin Fabella (alvinfabella@yahoo. com)
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REFLECTION:
God wants to bless us always. Continue to do what is right and good so that God may be glorified!

Lord, I look to You for help in time of need. Blessed Raynald de Bar, pray for us.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections- December 15, 2011

RECYCLED SERVANT

The Lord calls you back... – Isaiah 54:6

I felt like a has-been Christian leader. To add insult to injury, one of my former spiritual leaders called people like me a “recycled servant” of the Lord. Ouch.
After a crisis with my commitment in a community I served in for most of my life, I didn’t know where to go next. I was a blank slate, which was good because I could reinvent myself to be anything. My big problem was I didn’t know who I wanted to be. Or more crucially, who God wanted me to be.
But while I had run out of plans, God’s purpose for me was spot-on. Instead of being cast away like a useless piece of rag as I had feared, the Lord turned my crisis into an opportunity for greater growth and reach in my life and ministry.
Nope, He wasn’t finished with me yet. In fact, He had only begun another chapter — grander and more exciting than the previous ones in my life.
Friend, when you think you’re down to nothing, God is up to something. His plan for you is grander than your wildest dreams. He’s not just the God of “recycled servants”; He’s the God who makes all things new!Rissa Singson-Kawpeng (justbreatherissa@gmail.com)
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REFLECTION:
The God I believe in is a god of second chances.” (Pres. Bill Clinton)

Dear Lord, when I make a mess of my life, come and set me on the right path.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections- December 14, 2011

Ever Present

And sent them to the Lord to ask, “Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another.” – Luke 7:19

It amazes me how one man who walked the face of the earth more than 2,000 years ago is gloriously remembered to this day. His name has lived through the ages!
Thank God that I did not live in Jesus’ time, because if I did, I would probably be among the unbelievers. I rejoice that I am alive in this time and age of spiritual renewal because I get to experience Jesus in all His glory. He may have walked among men in the past but He still is ever present among us, living in people’s hearts.
I experience Jesus in my cousin. As my priest-confessor, he knows the ugly cobwebs I had woven in the past yet he treats me as if I were the most beautiful person on earth.
I experience Jesus in a dear friend who once wrote me a five-figure check upon learning that I needed financial assistance. I experience Jesus in the stranger who came to my rescue when my car broke down in the middle of a busy street.
My list goes on.
Let us open our eyes to the goodness that surrounds us, and see that Jesus still walks among us.Nova Arias (nova.svp@gmail.com)
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REFLECTION:
In whom do you see Jesus? Make a list of the people who bless your life.

Thank You, Lord Jesus, for living in our hearts. You have kept Your promise to remain with us until the end of time.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections- December 13, 2011

THE WINNERS’ TWINS

“‘I will not,’ he answered, but later he changed his mind and went.’” – Matthew 21:29

Life is not what happens to you. It’s what you do with what happens to you. Rain pours down on the good and the bad. It’s what you do with the rain that matters.
Jesus “happened” to the so-called good and bad people of His time. But it was only those who acted on His message who attained life. In today’s parable, what made the first son different is that he took action.
When competing runners trip and fall, they can stay on the ground and meditate on the hurt and think of the pain. Or they can take action and run again. If they can’t run, they can walk. If they can’t walk, they can limp. If they can’t limp, they can crawl. Both winners and losers fall. But winners win because they never stop taking action.
It’s OK to mourn and get stunned for a while until you gather back your senses. But this has to have an expiry date. Are you overwhelmed with your problems? Is your marriage tearing apart? Are you buried in a mountain of debt? Have you lost your job? Has the news of your sickness paralyzed you? Seek God’s wisdom and find out what needs to be done. Then take action!
Hope and Action are the winners’ twins. Jon Escoto (faithatworkjon@gmail.com)
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REFLECTION:
Have you been wallowing in the mud of self-pity and playing the “blame (others) game”? Friend, it’s time to take action today.

Father, I’ve been swept under by huge problems. There’s so much to do. Today is the day to begin. Give me the strength.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections- December 12, 2011

Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe
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Spirit –filled

The spirit of God came upon him, and he gave voice to his oracle. – Numbers 24: 2-3

Years ago, we conducted a weekend Life in the Spirit Seminar for school personnel. I was assigned to give a sharing on Day 2. As it was my first time, I prepared by praying intensely and writing down my talk.
My care group head, Myrna, gave her sharing on the first day. Her delivery was flawless and touching. She didn’t even have notes to look at! After her talk, I asked her to coach me.
That night, I practiced. But all my preparations seemed useless: my delivery was awful, my tongue tripped over words and I forgot some points.
The next day, I was a bunch of nerves. I told my co-facilitator to just read my notes if I faint. At my pre-talk pray over, I surrendered completely to the Holy Spirit. When the mic was handed to me, I felt a strange calm — as if my body with all its jitters went to sleep and a divine power took over. I delivered my sharing smoothly, glanced at my notes briefly and felt the words flowing out of my mouth. It was an exceptional experience — like being slain in the Spirit and speaking in tongues rolled into one. Lella Santiago (mirellasantiago@yahoo.com)

REFLECTION:
Let go, let God, let good rule your life.

Spirit of God, take control of me.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections - December 11, 2011

I AM THIRD

“He is the one who comes after me, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie.” – John 1:27

There was a young man who was popular in school. He was intelligent and a leader in school organizations. A friend visited him at home and saw the plaque hanging on his room door with the words “I am Third.” When his friend asked what it meant, the young man explained, “It’s the motto I try to live by. It means God is first, others are second and I am third.”
Just like this boy, John the Baptist knew his place. He knew from the start that his mission was to “prepare the way” for the Messiah. When people asked him why he baptized others if he was not the Christ, he said in humility, “I baptize with water, but among you stands one you do not know. He is the one who comes after me, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie.” Because he had his own followers, John could have set himself up as the anointed one from God and built a church separate from Jesus’. There could have been a rivalry between Baptizers and Christians.
Only when we put the will of God and the needs of others ahead of our own do we become true humble servants of the Lord. Let us take our rightful place as “third” and do our part in building God’s kingdom on earth. Dina PecaƱa (dpecana@yahoo.com)
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REFLECTION:
“He must become greater; I must become less” (John 3:30).

Jesus, grant me the grace to be humble as I serve You so that others may see no longer me but You, the Messiah, who is powerfully at work in me.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections - December 10, 2011

BURN

Till like a fire there appeared the prophet whose words were as a flaming furnace. – Sirach 48:1

Gerry is the most quiet person in the world. He doesn’t say much. But one time, when we were hanging out and the topic of music came up, he lit up like a flame and started talking about composition, piano playing, great musicians and the like. We couldn’t shut him up. He kept on going and going. It was obvious that this was his passion.
They say the second greatest fear — next to fear of death — is fear of public speaking. While my standards for eloquence are high, I also believe that when a person speaks about something he’s passionate about, even if he’s not a good speaker, he can be captivating. When he’s an authority on what he talks about, he can be interesting. And for that moment, he is the best speaker in the world on that topic.
I believe the passion God put in us is the unique gift we were meant to share. It’s the message we were meant to proclaim. And when we do, we are like a burning fire. George Tolentino Gabriel (george.svp@gmail.com)
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REFLECTION:
What is your passion? Have you shared it to others?

Lord, let me always burn for Your glory.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections- December 9, 2011

friend of sinners

“Then the Son of Man came, he ate and drank, and people said: ‘Look at this man! A glutton and drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’” – Matthew 11:19

“Tell me who your friends are and I’ll tell you who you are.” This is an oft-repeated quote I heard from my parents, teachers and elders when I was young to drive home the point that I should dissociate myself from classmates and neighbors who have a bad record in school or the community lest I also be branded as such. As I matured, however, I realized that a person can be a catalyst for change. But how can we expect “bad” people to change if the good ones avoid them like a plague?
This was exactly what Jesus did. He did not avoid tax collectors and sinners; instead, He befriended them and dined with them. Jesus had His reasons for doing so — He changed their ways, as we saw in Zaccheus, the tax collector who made amends for his wrongdoings (Luke 19:1-10).
Let us, therefore, not judge a person on the basis of who his friends or companions are. Instead, let us look at the intention of that person. Bay Cabrera (baycabrera@yahoo.com)
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REFLECTION:
Jesus, by His example, taught us not to judge other people by the company they keep. Have we been judgmental of others?

Lord, teach us not to be harsh in our judgment of others.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections - December 8, 2011

Solemnity of Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary

FORGIVEN AT THE FEAST

“For nothing will be impossible for God.” – Luke 1:37

We had a dispute over some property, so her family and mine were not on speaking terms. I did not see her for about a year. I wondered if it was ever possible that our families would be reconciled.
Then, at The Feast, the prayer gathering of the Light of Jesus, Bro. Bo Sanchez spoke about forgiveness. He told us to lift to the Lord people we need to forgive or ask forgiveness from. I prayed for our families. Then, during the love offering time, as everyone approached the stage to put their envelopes into the collection basket, I saw her! She saw me, and without saying a word, we just hugged and cried on each other’s shoulder. I had been attending The Feast regularly but that day was the first time she attended. What were the chances that she should come on the day that the talk would be on forgiveness?
In today’s Gospel, as impossible as it may seem, the Immaculate Conception happened. We celebrate today this crucial event, which eventually leads to Christmas, the birth of Jesus — God’s loving reconciliation with man. Yes, Christmas is all about forgiveness — God becoming man to save us from our sins and assure us of everlasting life with Him. Rejoice, nothing is impossible to God! Cynthia Santiago (boses2go@gmail.com)
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REFLECTION:
Christmas is all about reconciliation. Forgive and be forgiven.

Lord, let me give unconditional love this Christmas season.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Listening

By: Francis Kong

John Maxwell says “Most people overvalue talking and undervalue listening, even those in people-related jobs such as sales. But the truth is effective communication is not persuasion. It's listening ... listen twice as much as you speak.” Too many people love the sound of their own voice with no one interested at all. God has given us two ears and one mouth so we could listen more and speak less.

Daily Bible Readings - December 7, 2011

GOD’S YOKE

“Come to me, all of you who are tired... and I will give you rest.... Take my yoke...” – Matthew 11: 28-29

“My heart is restless until it rests in thee,” St. Augustine writes. How true! And the rest that we find in the Lord is the real one.
How do you picture rest? Sitting lazily in a sofa or lying flat in bed? A one-hour Swedish body massage or a VIP spa treatment? Checking in at a five-star hotel or going for a grand vacation in Boracay?
Truth is, you can do these things and still end up bothered and troubled. Somehow, after the long sleep, the special treatment, the grand vacation — you’re still restless! Why? Because you’re still carrying your yoke.
On the contrary, I’ve seen really busy people yet they don’t get tired. Because their hearts are at rest! They’re not exempted from problems. They, too, have their yokes to carry. But they’re not burdened with its weight because they’ve come before the Lord, and have replaced their yoke with the one God gives them.
God never promised that you won’t be without problems. But He said if it is His yoke that you carry, you will have rest.
Come to Him. Trade your yoke for His. And find that real kind of rest you need.Alvin Barcelona (kpreacheralvin@gmail.com)
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REFLECTION:
Do you feel heavily burdened by the yoke you’re carrying? Whose yoke is it? Do you want to trade it with God’s yoke today?

Dear Lord, I take Your yoke — of love, of service, of righteousness, of holiness — today. And I receive the rest that You give me. Amen.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections- December 6, 2011

POMPEII

The rugged land shall be made a plain, the rough country, a broad valley. – Isaiah 40:4

Pompeii, one of the places my parents and I visited during our European tour many years ago, stands out in my memory.
Pompeii is a city near Naples in Italy that was completely destroyed and buried when Mt. Vesuvius erupted in 76 A.D. It’s much like the towns of Pampanga that were buried in lahar when Mt. Pinatubo erupted in 1991, but in the case of Pompeii, it gave us a glimpse of the life of a city during the Roman Empire. The forum, the Roman baths, the houses and villas, even the crude paintings on the walls, were preserved. The hoof marks of chariots on the pavements were still visible.
Excavations revealed that the people were caught unaware by the eruption. Many were eating or sleeping. Every little detail of their lives was frozen in time for future generations to see.
The sight brought home to me two big truths: that nature runs its own course and that death comes to us in the most unexpected ways and time. But there’s a bigger truth that we should always remember: The Son of Man will come to judge the good from the bad.
Are you ready for His coming?Tess V. Atienza (svp_tvatienza@yahoo.com)

REFLECTION:
Are you preparing for the inevitable in life?

Lord, grant me a heart that is always ready to embrace the unexpected.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Your Attitude Amulet

Your Attitude Amulet
by Anthony Fernando

Every morning you wake up, climb out of bed and get ready for the day ahead. After having a shower, getting dressed and doing your hair, you most probably stand in front of the mirror and do a quick final check before you walk out the door to face the world.

It is in that moment when you are looking at yourself in the mirror each morning that you can add a simple two-minute process that can change your life.

How To Improve Your Attitude

Imagine for a moment, that next to your mirror hangs a heart shaped amulet.

This amulet is an Attitude Amulet.

Your Attitude Amulet has two faces. It has a golden face, which represents a positive attitude, and a dark face, which represents a negative attitude.

Each morning you place your Attitude Amulet around your neck and decide which face of the amulet you are going to show to the world.

When you display the positive face of your Attitude Amulet to the world, you focus on what you really want from life. You have positive expectations of the day ahead, and you are open to connecting and interacting with others.

On the other hand, when you display the negative face of your Attitude Amulet to the world, you tend to focus on the problems in your life. You have negative expectations of the day ahead, and you close yourself off from connecting and interacting with others.

Although your Attitude Amulet is invisible to the naked eye, everyone you come into contact with during the day instantly knows which side of the amulet you have on display.

Another important aspect of your Attitude Amulet is that it is strongly magnetic.

When you display the positive face of your amulet to the world, it attracts people who have a positive attitude and repels people who have a negative attitude.

Conversely, when you have the negative face of your Attitude Amulet on display, it attracts people who have a negative attitude and repels people who have a positive attitude.

Let’s take a look at an example to see how this works in the real world.

Cathy’s Day – Take 1

Cathy opened her eyes with a groan and reached out and turned off her alarm clock with a slap. She dragged herself out of bed and was still half asleep as she had a shower.

The warm water helped her wake up properly and she proceeded to get ready for the day. Once she had dressed, tied up her hair and applied her make up, she paused and did a final check in the mirror.

Without thinking, she reached over, picked up her Attitude Amulet and placed it over her head, not noticing that the dark face of the amulet was facing the world.

In the car on the way to work, Cathy thought about all the problems she was currently dealing with. There were the issues at work with her manager, her brother’s financial mess, and the fact that her last date had been a complete disaster.

As she reviewed this litany of problems, she worked herself into a negative frame of mind and was not looking forward to the day ahead.

At work, Cathy caught the elevator to the 12th floor, and avoided making eye contact with anyone as she made her way to her cubicle.

She dumped her bag under her desk, switched on her computer and stared glumly at the pile of claim forms that she needed to process by the end of the day.

After checking her emails, Cathy decided she needed a coffee to kick start her day. On the way to the coffee machine she bumped into her friend Rachel, who said, “Hey Cath, the girls and I are just going to the cafeteria, do you want to come?”

Cathy just didn’t feel like company so she replied, “No, I better get stuck into my work. I’ll catch up with you later.”

At the coffee machine, Cathy met another of her workmates named Wendy.

“Another fun-filled day of claims forms ahead?” asked Wendy.

“Yep, can’t wait” replied Cathy sarcastically.

They picked up their coffee and talked about the latest ridiculous decision their manager had made as they made their way back to their desks.

Cathy then faced a long, tiresome day of processing claim forms before going home and zoning out in front of the television.

Cathy’s Day – Take 2

Cathy opened her eyes and reached out and turned off her alarm clock. She pulled herself out of bed and was still half asleep as she had a shower.

The warm water helped her wake up properly and she proceeded to get ready for the day. Once she had dressed, tied up her hair and applied her make up, she paused and did a final check in the mirror.

She reached over, picked up her Attitude Amulet and placed it over her head making sure that the positive face of the amulet was facing the world. She smiled at her reflection and headed out the door.

In the car on the way to work, Cathy focused on what she was going to do with the day ahead, and set herself a goal of completing all her claim forms by lunchtime so she could chat to her manager. She also wanted to organise to catch up with her brother, and investigate the ‘Meet at Dinner’ dating website her friend had told her about.

At work, Cathy caught the elevator up to the 12th floor, and smiled at several people as she made her way to her cubicle.

She slid her bag under her desk, flicked on her computer, looked down at her pile of claim forms waiting to be processed and said under her breath, “OK – You guys are going down!”

On the way to get a coffee, Cathy bumped into her friend Rachel, who said, “Hey Cath, the girls and I are just going to the cafeteria, do you want to come?”

“Sure thing” replied Cathy. She walked past her workmate Wendy with a nod, and joined Rachel and the others.

In the cafeteria, Rachel announced that she was pregnant and Cathy and the other girls were incredibly excited and happy for her.

After an exciting morning coffee, Cathy was in a great mood and ploughed through her work in record time.

She felt good about having been so productive and ended up having a fantastic day.


As this example illustrates, each morning we each have the option to decide which face of our Attitude Amulet we are going to show to the world. This single decision has a huge impact on how our day unfolds and ultimately the kind of life we lead.

So today I want to encourage you to add a simple two-minute process to your morning routine. When you complete your final visual check in the mirror, imagine picking up your Attitude Amulet and placing it over your head.

Make the conscious decision to have the positive face of your amulet on show, and use this as a reminder to focus on what you really want from life, have positive expectations of the day ahead and be open to connecting and interacting with others.

Until Next Time,
Dr. Anthony
Dare To Dream

Daily Bible Reflections

December 5, 2011
Remarkable Moments

“We have seen incredible things today.” – Luke 5:26

I have big dreams for my children.
My son has been diagnosed with autism and I am still waiting for the day when he can spontaneously and sincerely say, “I love you, Mommy!” When that day comes, it will be a wonderful day.
My little girl is just a toddler but I can’t wait for the day when she comes home from school and shows me her first star as an award. When that day comes, it will be an amazing day.
For now, I content myself with anecdotes from my son’s teachers of his progress in school and in therapy. Once, when his teacher reported that my son had spontaneously identified the picture of a boy and said “boy,” it was a wonderful day for me.
A few days ago, when I came home from work, my little girl came running to me, shouted my name and gave me a tight hug. It instantly made my day.
Remarkable moments are not limited to the times when extraordinary things happen. Simple moments I spend with family and loved ones are just as remarkable. Each and every minute spent with my family is a moment to remember and be thankful for. Mae Ignacio (maemi04@aim.com)
5
REFLECTION:
What made you smile today? Thank God for that incredible moment.

Dear Father, thank You for every amazing moment You have given me. Thank You for today.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections

December 4, 2011
GOD’S PERFECT TIMING

The Lord does not delay in fulfilling His promise, though some speak of delay; rather He gives you time because He does not want anyone to perish, but that all may come to conversion. – 2 Peter 3:9

I was almost 25 when I had my first boyfriend.
God knew I wasn’t ready for a relationship so He gave me a sign not to pursue it after I asked for one. But my obstinacy got the upper hand. As a result, I inflicted unnecessary pain and suffering upon myself.
I should’ve spent those times growing and serving God wholeheartedly and celebrating the gift of singleness. But I was impatient. I chose to experience the most coveted feeling of being in love. It took me three long years to recover from two consecutive heartaches as I had another failed relationship after the first one.
I was not proud of myself. In fact, I blamed myself for not waiting for God’s perfect time. If only I listened to Him.
Now, I’m so grateful that I’m doing things right and waiting for God’s more than- perfect time. I found my ideal man in the community, and he met most of my non-negotiables. I don’t need to compromise my faith anymore. Leeanne Sy (havenofleeanne@yahoo.com)
4
REFLECTION:
Think you’re too old to be single? Remember that the most miserable women (and men) are those who married the wrong person.

God, help me wait for Your perfect timing so that I can spare myself from unnecessary pain and suffering.

Daily Bible Reflections

December 3, 2011
MOST WONDERFUL TIME

He will be gracious to you when you cry out, as soon as he hears he will answer you. – Isaiah 30:19

Thirteenth month pay. Bonus. Christmas gifts. Opportunities to give. Simbang Gabi. Cool weather. Shopping. Parties. I find December a gracious month in so many ways. Perhaps that’s why it’s my favorite month.
Not everyone, of course, agrees with me. Some feel pressured by the unspoken need to give. There is loneliness if you’re single or your loved ones are away from you. Being a part of all the activities is also strenuous.
As we face the coming days, let us remind ourselves that Christmas is not any of those things. The things that I mentioned earlier that I love are just really icing on the cake, so to speak. Because essentially and fundamentally, Christmas is about Jesus. It is the presence of Emmanuel, God with us, that makes Christmas a beautiful month.
It is the remembrance of His great sacrifice and the joy that we have because of Him that makes this time special. And it is recalling all the many blessings, graces and mercies that He has shown and continues to show to us throughout the year that makes Christmas “the most wonderful time of the year.”
So, to quote Tiny Tim of A Christmas Carol, “God bless us every one!”Joy Sosoban (jsosoban@gmail.com)
3
REFLECTION:
How can I remember and act daily on God’s graciousness this Christmas?

Lord Jesus, show me the way to spend this time wisely.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections

December 2, 2011
CAN YOU SEE?

And their eyes were opened. – Matthew 9:30

Have you ever met someone with a victim mentality? Here’s a sample of his script:
I am not good enough because I don’t have a job.
The most important person in my life left me and I feel so empty.
I can’t fulfill my dreams because I don’t have business skills.
Familiar lines? I should know. I used to say them a lot. It was like groping through a dark room looking for a match without realizing that there was a wall switch.
Too many times I failed to recognize that I am much more capable of landing a job that will make use my core competencies, more deserving of a relationship that is based on healthy self-love, forgiveness and respect and more intelligent to learn new skills to make my dreams a reality.
Too many times I have been blind to the truth that my reality is a product of my beliefs, and that I am responsible for creating the world that I put myself into, and that I can create the life that God originally intended for me. For His glory. For His kingdom.
Today’s Gospel tells us how Jesus opened the eyes of two blind men into a new reality — a world of abundance, healing and love. Reden Cerrer (redcer@yahoo.com)
2
REFLECTION:
What areas of your life need to be freed from blindness? Let Jesus touch your eyes so you can see the reality that the Father has created for you.

Open the eyes of my heart, O Lord, so that I may also bring to You those who need Your healing.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Daily Bible Reflections

December 1, 2011
FIGHT TINY AND LOVE BIG

“Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rocks.” – Matthew 7:24

One day, my wife and I had a really big fight. We were getting dressed for a prayer meeting when the argument began. What it was about, I hardly remember. In the car, our heated debate became more intense. When we reached the parking lot of the prayer meeting, my wife’s eyes were so puffy from crying, she didn’t want anyone to see her.
So we drove home with seething rage in our chest, feeling hurt and very silly. Imagine, we got dressed and drove for an hour, only to turn back and go home! When we returned, we continued talking passionately. But finally, after two more hours of arguing, we embraced each other.
That, my friends, was our last big fight — and it happened many years ago. No, we’ve not been all lovey-dovey since then. Because my wife and I have little fights very often. But we have improved. We trained ourselves not to bottle little hurts or irritations. I tell her how she irks me, and she tells me how I offend her. So, my wife pouts her angry pout, and I frown my angry frown. After a minute or two, we’re hugging each other again. And that’s how we keep our relationship strong in the face of conflicts. Bo Sanchez (bosanchez@kerygmafamily.com)
1
REFLECTION:
How do you handle conflicts with the people you love? Is it with love or with hatred?

Lord of Mercy, grant me the grace to always handle minor and major conflicts with love.

Daily Bible Reflections

November 30, 2011
bounce back!

“The clever you have revealed to the merest children.” – Luke 10:21

One of my earliest childhood memories happened when I was only three years old. My family was watching television one night when my dad noticed that something smelled odd. He turned to my mom and asked if she noticed it, too. They traced the odd smell to an infected ear lobe — mine! And it hurt like crazy because my earring was stuck underneath skin and pustule.
With a first aid kit ready, my parents held me down, yanked out the earring and drained the infected ear lobe. Of course, I cried, kicked and screamed my lungs out through the process. But can you guess what I did immediately after my parents got the earring out?
I asked, “When can I wear earrings again?”
It’s amazing how quickly I recovered. But I believe God created us all this way — resilient to pain and able to bounce back from any trial. We just tend to forget as we get older. Pepper Bruce (pepper.bruce@gmail.com)
29
REFLECTION:
“Man never made any material as resilient as the human spirit.” (Bernard Williams)

Lord, let me not forget that You have given me everything I need to overcome any trial that has or will come my way. You created me strong and nothing can keep me down.

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